Friday, August 23, 2013

Boar's Head Products May Be Contaminated at Kroger!

Don't trust everything you read!! Boar's Head products may be contaminated at Kroger stores!

We are big fans of Boar's Head products. Why? This company is committed to providing excellent gluten free products—says so right on all of their labels and brochures. Since my husband is celiac and very intolerant of gluten, finding a company with a line of products to make a party tray on a moment’s notice is important to us.

For years, we have confidently purchased Boar’s Head products from our local Kroger store in Opelika, Alabama, and have always been very satisfied with them. That was until recently.

While purchasing Boar’s Head prosciutto and provolone cheese at the deli counter a few days ago, I noticed a little sign in the corner of the case that says “ Products in this case may have come in contact with . . .” and list all of the eight recognized allergens, including wheat.

When we asked the deli manager about how could this be, she was completely ignorant, saying the sign was for legal purposes only and proceeded to explain how there was no gluten in meats and cheeses. No kidding Sherlock; but how about the concept of cross contamination this little sign infers? Do the people at this particular Kroger not know to clean the machines between uses? Do they not know what the sliced products come into contact with while out of the refrigerated case and during the slicing process?

The signage tells me Kroger does not control what their deli meats come in contact with inside of the case nor do they control the cleanliness of their slicers and wrap areas. This sign recognizes the possibility of cross contamination and admits their lack of control.

This also tells me that other customers who might not have seen the small warning signs might innocently purchase cross-contaminated meats and cheeses, believing that because they carry the Boar's Head label they are safe. People do not have to be gluten intolerant to become very ill from cross contamination of all sorts.

If I represented Boar's Head, I would be extremely upset with Kroger for possibly compromising the purity of the products. I suspect this warning signage is not just our local Kroger, but is a company wide disclaimer.

Bottom line is don’t be afraid to speak up and make your voice heard. I have lodged a complaint with the Health Department, the Boar’s Head Company and with the US Food Safety. Hopefully, someone can get the attention of the folks who need it—Kroger.

Author: Dr. Jacquelyn P. Horne
Copyright: 2013

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